Updated for Tuersday, 9/20/11:http://collegesportsinfo.com/2011/09/19 ... t-updates/
* In addition to the Big East non-football schools discussing a split, the potential Big 12 remnants (should Pac-16 occur) and the remaining Big East football schools are considering a merger. There are multiple scenarios on the table:
1) Big East hybrid brings in all remaining Big 12 schools wich is expected to be a maximum of 5...would give Big East 12 for football and 20 for all-sports.
2) Big East football 7 merge with Big 12 5 under Big East umbrella without basketball-only schools
3) Big East football 7 merge with Big 12 5 under Big 12 banner (assuming the better Big 12 bowls for the time being)
* As mentioned on this site earlier, Villanova did officially apply to the ACC. Mentality is they don't want to be left behind. Nova would upgrade to FBS football if need be, but would also love to join as a non-football member should a 15th school like Notre Dame join for non-football sports.
* The Big East has claimed that they will hold Pitt and Syracuse to the conference contract, meaning both schools will need to wait 27 months before leaving for the ACC. That's 3 lame duck seasons and a $5 million exit fee. You can bet that the Big East and ACC lawyers will be negotiating, trying to find a way to get both schools out early for a set fee. ACC schools would likely contribute to the cause since the sooner they get those schools in, the sooner they can renegotiate their TV contracts by adding the Pitt and Syracuse value.
* Note that the Big East TV contract is up for renewal soon. It's unlikely that networks will be willing to pay as much knowing that both schools and perhaps others will be leaving soon. So it would be wise for the Big East to try to milk the ACC for extra money via exit fees in return to letting the schools out early.
* If the Big East is planning to hold exiting schools to the 27 months, then one shouldn't be shocked if the ACC invited Uconn and Rutgers sooner than later as they would need to plan 3 years in advance due to exit dates. Adding those 2 schools, 4 total, would give the ACC the majority of the markets/schools that the proposed new Big East TV contract would include.
* As expected, the Big East basketball school coaches want the hybrid to remain as for now, it means they compete against Uconn, Louisville, etc.
* The Mountain West has had preliminary discussions internally (and feeling out the school) about asking TCU if they'd like to remain in the Mountain West. If the Big East were to lose Uconn and Rutgers to the ACC and say Missouri was not part of the Big East/Big 12 merger, TCU might be wise to consider remaining in the MWC. Key will be if the MWC can get a BCS autobid, something the Big East/B12 merger will likely have. But if the group is: TCU, Baylor, Kansas, Kansas St., Iowa St., Louisville, Cincinnati, WVU, USF and 1-3 CUSA schools, TCU might still find this group to be more appealing than remain/returning to the MWC.
* The Mountain West and CUSA are again discussing a football-only merger. The idea would be for the 2 separate conferences to combine their TV contracts for football, possibly staging some sort of championship game of champions. Note that the primary motive of the merger will be to gain a BCS automatic berth by claiming that it's 1 spot for 24 schools, taking political heat off the BCS as it would give BCS access to those 24 schools.
* MWC might try to get BYU back if the conference had a BCS AQ.
* ECU, a school expected to once again be left out of the conference realignment shuffle by the BCS conferences, released a statement you'd expect from the former Iraqi Minister of Propaganda, proclaiming ECU is actively involved in what is happening now. That is not true if by "involved" they mean they have BCS options on their own.
* Both Oklahoma and Texas have granted authority to their school presidents to pursue Pac-12 membership. For Texas though, the regents would need to be back involved if a formal move to the Pac-12 were recommended by their president.
* Oklahoma made it clear that they are less interested in rebuilding the Big 12 due to the threat of litigation by Big 12 members, claim such threats should not be the basis of goodwill if trying to keep a conference member from leaving.
* The ACC has had discussions with Texas regarding all-sports membership, but one of the reported issues is that if Texas joined for all-sports (which is what the ACC seems to be demanding), the ACC would prefer Texas and Kansas, NOT Texas and Texas Tech.
* Uconn feels it has a better than average chance of joining the ACC.
* SEC is rumored to have less interest in WVU as previously thought.